TC Series

March 2019 – car of the month – 25676 in New Zealand

25676
TC21/100 car number 25676, registered CN7387 is alive and well and living in New Zealand. It is still in original condition and one family owned since purchased new in 1954 in Lower Hutt by Mr Starke. It was purchased the day that his daughter Rosey was born. Mr Starke is now in his nineties, and the car is now in the care of Rosey. It is in the ‘Steel Grey’ original colour, with wire wheels option and a red interior. I am currently the caretaker of the car as Rose’s daughter (currently on a O/E in UK), will take over the car on her return. It has had recently come out of a long hibernation, had some mechanical work done to bring it back to WOF condition, and is motoring again in VCC and ACCNZ events. Doug Dickson
The US brochure for the TC21/100 – see comments and further pages below

The TC21 was not marketed as such – it was the Alvis Three Litre, as was the TA21 which preceded it. It was only the marketing department that came up with TC21/100, the emphasis on the 100 being for both bhp and mph.

25377 This was probably the first Grey Lady Works demonstrator and Press Car, one of the last TC21’s. It must have been upgraded to Grey Lady specification for the task. Note the vertical bars in the bonnet air intakes, replaced with gauze grilles in production. Photo:- Nick Simpson Archive.
25377 This was probably the first Grey Lady Works demonstrator and Press Car, one of the last TC21’s. It must have been upgraded to Grey Lady specification for the task. Note the vertical bars in the bonnet air intakes, replaced with gauze grilles in production.
Photo:- Nick Simpson Archive.

Total production over the short period 1953-1955 was 726, mostly Mulliners saloons, but including 100 Tickford dropheads and 26 Grabers.

The Tickfords have survived remarkably well with about one half known to exist.

If you own, or did own, a TC do please make a comment below to record its current state so we can update the records.

The last published AOC register of the TC21 and TC21/100 models was in May 2003 (Number 32) when Colin Newby was Model Secretary. A small number of printed copies are still available in the archives.


We have updated the register to 2019 and copies are available to owners on request.


…..  from 23rd August 2000….25608-otx25608-otx-704-dt-230800-2

25608 Richard writes "I bought this car from my friend Chris Denham in 2008 (as it was below) and restored the car in 2010/11. He bought it maroon and stone a livery it kept for the Paris to Peking rally but as the wings largely fell off during the harsh rally aluminium wings were made in 2000 also taking as you can see a jerry can and a spare wheel in the front wings as Chris put a 25 gallon fuel tank in the boot.
25608 Richard Bagge writes “I bought this car from my friend Chris Denham in 2008 and restored the car in 2010/11. He bought it in maroon and stone a livery it kept for the Paris to Peking rally but as the wings largely fell off during the harsh rally aluminium wings were made in 2000 also taking as you can see a jerry can and a spare wheel in the front wings as Chris put a 25 gallon fuel tank in the boot.
25608 restored
25608 restored

The following gallery is of identified but not necessarily surviving cars.

 

What followed this model, the TC108G, is described in Rara Avis

25 thoughts on “TC Series”

  1. TC21/100 25823 is in South Australia, It was registered in the UK as NWK404. The purchaser had the car in the UK for a while before shipping to Australia. He appears to have been a TV interviewer. The car fell into a poor state and sometime later needed up in Western Australia. It had some work carried out on it, but no evidence that it was actually registered. Subsequently sold to an Alvis owner in NSW on the death of the WA owner. Purchased in 2014 by me in 2014, it has undergone a full mechanical overhaul, with engine just about to be reinstalled. Hopefully it will be back on the road in the not too distant future.

    1. I’ve owned 25826 for just under a year and bought it in a very fine condition so can afford to leave it in the garage without too much work required. I do hope that you have made progress with your own restoration and are now able to enjoy the fruits of your labours. It’s truly heartening to know that there is the will to preserve what is worth having in this world.
      Fight the good fight!
      Best wishes, Tim Perks

  2. TC21/100 25614 (reg VPE289) is alive and in, I believe, original bodywork.
    It has been upgraded to a 5 speed gearbox and electric power steering.
    I’ve very recently purchased it so would love to know any history anyone can tell me.

    1. My TC21, without the flimsy chrome windows a la Morris, is 25183 but currently with engine 24790. I still have block 25183 but illness has prevented the planned rebuild (broken piston ring no2 cyl) which will probably require the body off as one of the mounting brackets broke from much towing on the continent in the 70s. Very economical tow car, with SU pump and ES needles, plus twin CR Foster economisers.

    2. Hello Steve, I’m guessing you went with the EZY power steering which I found was excellent on another car and I’ve bought a set for the 21. Are you able to tell me what 5 speed box is fitted to your car please? Thanks Mike Osborne

      1. Hi Mike

        I can only tell you that i was told it’s a Ford. There are no labels on it to say what type, etc it is. Works well though. I understand that changing to a 5 speed is a common way of improving the ride. The engine is easily able to cope. Not that I go over 60 mph due to the lack of modern braking distances.

        Steve

      2. Thanks Steve, I ‘ve heard of Ford and Toyota boxes being used. I’ve been looking to get a 3.77 CWP for my TA21 as per the TC21/100 I am restoring. No luck so far!

  3. I have owned my TC21/100 registration RLX367 since 2001. It has undergone various bits of works including a rust removal campaign, respray, gearbox replacement, differential rebuild, as well as a complete engine rebuild at the Historic Engine Company. There’s always more to do but for now I enjoy driving it around Dorset.

    1. I enjoyed RLX fifty years ago as a student and pleased that four subsequent owners deemed it worth maintaining and restoring. A TD21 replaced it in 1970 but now a Tickford TC21/100 complements my Graber TC21/100 found in 1974.

    2. I purchased RLX 367 from John Fox in 1970 (for 200 quid!). I was a 19 year old student and was persuaded to buy it by my then flatmate, John Dearnley, an avid Alvis enthusiast. It was in nice condition except for the usual rot around the rear wings and to the spats, which I had ‘done’. It was my only car for two years, but after dropping a valve seat insert for the second time (with the attendant disastrous consequences), I decided enough was enough and sold it in 1972 to get married!!. I subsequently owned a TA14 DHC for 27 years and now have a 12/50 Beetleback which I’ve had for 12. RLX was the car I always regretted selling and always hope to spot it again at some Alvis bash, though never have.

      1. Hi Neil, I used your £200 towards a TD21 for every day use (30,000 miles in two years) before buying my then dream car, a Gordon Keeble. Not long after a TD21 drophead joined it before it too got sold to get married. I saw RLX again at Mick Fletcher’s a few years ago. John

      2. Hi, Neil. I dropped a valve seat coming out of a car park in Farnham in 1970 and came to the conclusion it was the result of using cheap petrol in France, the Super being a bit pricy for a schoolteacher’s budget at the time. I had it apart in the garage yard behind Pierrepont School and took the head to a firm in Guildford, where it was machined and all the seats drilled and sealed at the joints with pegs to stop it happening again. The piston had a hole in it and had to be replaced but I got away with the bore. Sadly, it now has a broken wiper ring and had to be laid up at the request of the local constabulary, the emitted fumes deemed dangerous. Any idea why your seat dropped in?

  4. TC21/100 car number 25676, registered CN7387 is alive and well and living in New Zealand. It is still in original condition and one family owned since purchased new in 1954 in Lower Hutt by Mr Starke. It was purchased the day that his daughter Rosey was born. Mr Starke is now in his nineties, and the car is now in the care of Rosey. It is in the ‘Steel Grey’ original colour, with wire wheels option and a red interior. I am currently the caretaker of the car as Rose’s daughter (currently on a O/E in UK), will take over the car on her return.
    It has had recently come out of a long hibernation, had some mechanical work done to bring it back to WOF condition, and is motoring again in VCC and ACCNZ events.

  5. I own TC21/100 Grey Lady DHC 25656 body AL63 original registration NCG177. I purchased it in Boulder Colorado USA July 2017. It is in excellent mechanical shape and fairly good coachwork shape. I am in the process of “freshening” it. See my profile image for a view of it.

  6. TC21/100 25543 registration VJO329 is doing well. In restoration now. Will be finished in a couple weeks. Fun car to drive!

  7. TC21/100 vehicle serial number unknown. Mono-black. In 1960’s owned by the late Dr. A. S. TORRANCE of Mt Roskill, Auckland, New Zealand. Was purchased 2nd hand circa 1962 and was a familiar sight in our neighbourhood when Dad was doing “patient home visits”. Engine failed in a major fashion soon after purchase with blown head, leaking water into sump which necessitated being towed back to Auckland and entire engine being stripped, reconditioned and rebuilt. This was accomplished by a local mechanic with many parts having to be imported specially from UK. It ran beautifully after this. Due to mis-storage by the previous owner, many instances of rusty seams incurred expensive body repairs during the 3 (?) years my Dad owned it. I recall driving it as a 16-17 year-old (legally, with driving licence). It was lovely to drive and is probably responsible for my preference for quality cars. It had the sun-roof, twin fog-lamps, standard wheels (not wire spokes) but no radiator mascot. Sorry. No photograph readily available. I would be very interested to hear about the subsequent history of this lovely car.

    1. Thank you for following alvisarchive. If you contact the Alvis Car Club of New Zealand, see Links page, they may be able to put you in touch with the current owner. Please let us know if you succeed.

    2. Hi engine chassis number was 25783 .I owned the car from 1972 untill 1980. Was restored in recent years and is now in pristine condition .contact alvis car club for present owner info. Pete Anderson Rotorua NZ

      1. Hello Peter,
        Thanks for the info. A couple of weeks back I received an email from a relatively recent owner with pics. Car now 2-tone with a lovely light metallic green on most of the body, rest in black. Looked wonderful. As I recall that owner seemed to believe the car was again involved in a collision and badly damaged.

        Unfortunately I appear to have accidentally deleted the email before filing it.

  8. I recently read that only the Grey Lady spec TC21 was offered AS A DHC and that the base TC never had a DHC equivalent. Were any non-Grey Lady TC21s made?

    1. The TC21 Register published in 2003, written by Colin Newby, shows no TC21 with a Tickford body. Body number AL1, the first Grey Lady Dhc, was delivered in 1954 when the Three Litre was then designated as TC21/100. However, I have seen one car, AL23, which has a chassis plate showing only TC21 but it is to TC21/100 spec.

  9. I recently purchased what appears to be an original US sales brochure for 1954 Alvis Three Litre Tickford bodied cars, with illustrations of what I take to be TC21/100 Grey Lady drophead coupes.

    I am amazed to see east and west coast distributors listed – Fergus Moors Inc. in New York City and Cavalier Motor Cars Limited in Los Angeles. I didn’t think these cars were imported into the US – can anyone clarify?

    I would be happy to scan and post this 4 page item but I don’t immediately see how to do it on this forum.

    Thanks, Gary Lindstrom, NCG 177

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